Strange way for a hard drive to fail?

- Started with the dreaded Windows XP "Delayed Write Failed" error message. This started infrequently, after seeking the drive (loading an MP3, searching a directory, etc)
- After the error message, the hard drive disappears from the OS
- Hard drive was reappearing in the OS after a reboot. This worked 100% of the time. Now rebooting only helps 5% of the time.
- Windows OS goes to a long black screen after loading (2min of black screen)

- Drive is always recognized by BIOS
- Drive always passes diagnostic tests (when the OS recognizes it)
- When drive works (20% of the time I boot up), the data is 100% salvageable and not corrupt
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More about strange hard drive fail
  1. The very first thing I'd do is get a copy of any data on that drive that you don't want to loose.

    There's a chance that you've just got a bad or loose data cable - try changing the cable to see if that helps.

    Also have a look at the SMART data using a disk utility such as "DiskCheckup" to see if the disk's error counters are going up.
  2. When the drive was last working (a few days ago), it passed all SMART tests. Now I can't get the drive alive. I've tried switching cables to no avail.
  3. It's still recognized in BIOS.
  4. Well, in that situation I personally wouldn't trust the drive any more - I'd toss it and replace it with a new one.

    The only issue is if there's still data on there you need to get off. Is that the case? If so, you could try the freezer trick - some folks have reported success in temporarily resurrecting a hard drive by freezing it for 24 hours and then copying data from it while it's still cold.
  5. The drive has firmware problems and/or bad sectors. There is probably nothing you can do on your own. Cases such as this one require the use of highly specialized equipment to repair and or clone the drive. If you still need help with the drive, contact ReWave Data Recovery at 866-739-2835.
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